When to buy tickets to Hawaii has gotten complicated due to the recent arrival of Southwest Airlines and soon to be announced additional flights from California. Airlines are using the delay in more Southwest Hawaii flights to pull back on some sales until the announcement. There will still be sales beforehand, but rest assured that when SWA announces, there will be unprecedented sales across the board.
Keeping this in mind, a most frequent question we get is what to do under these circumstances. To help you save money and take advantage of upcoming Southwest Hawaii flights and the competitive “Southwest effect,” here are our latest suggestions for Hawaii vacations in 2019 and 2020.
When to buy cheap flights to Hawaii.
Spring 2019 low season travel (through June 13, 2019). Look to purchase value priced tickets as sales are released.
Summer 2019 high season travel (June 8 through August 12, 2019). Much as with spring break and Christmas/New Year holidays, when traveling during peak summer in any year, it is generally best to buy tickets as far in advance as possible due to both lack of deals and limited availability. Prices are typically 50% higher than right before or after peak season. Travel starting early August sees some softening in prices. Summer 2019 could still see surprises due to new competition as a result of Southwest Hawaii flights. Therefore, if you’re flexible, we suggest waiting until Southwest announces more flights before purchasing. While we aren’t going to see $99 airfares during peak summer, we would not be surprises to see fares from key west coast gateways drop 30% during summer 2019 if Southwest releases more flights.
Late Summer/Fall 2019 low season travel (August 12 to December 12, 2019, except over Thanksgiving). Late summer to fall airfares will be priced competitively, and availability is always good in fall. That will be even more the case in 2019, making it an optimal time to travel to Hawaii. The next sales released from Southwest and competitors will probably feature that time period, so you may need to wait for that in order to obtain the best deals.
Christmas/New Year 2019 high season holiday travel (December 13, 2019 through January 6, 2020). The best window of opportunity to purchase for Christmas/New Year begins each year at the end of January. Those who come to Hawaii at the holidays tend to purchase close to a year in advance to avoid disappointment. Remember that accommodations and cars are challenging at the holidays, and, as with trans-Pacific and inter-island flights, must be planned far in advance to avoid problems.
Winter 2020 low season travel (January 7 through mid-March 2020). There will be widespread winter (and perhaps spring) 2020 airfare sales without doubt. Winter had been an expensive time of year to visit Hawaii. In the last few years, however, winter prices became more moderate.
Spring break 2020 high season travel (mid-March to early April 2020). When traveling at spring break, it is usually best to buy tickets as far in advance as possible due to lack of deals and limited availability. Prices are typically 50% higher than right before or after that period. This upcoming spring break, however, could have some good surprises, since we will have more Southwest flights operating.
Tip: At Beat of Hawaii we have our fishing net out to catch Hawaii vacation deals for you. Please subscribe to our free updates to reel them in first or like us Facebook. Then stay tuned and act quickly on announced availability to save time and money.
Visit Cheapest Time to Fly to Hawaii for more info and to ask questions.